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Ireland

The other large island in the British Isles. Situated as it is in a position of relative isolation, Ireland has gathered unto itself over the centuries a number of survivals in culture and history not found elsewhere. This gifted folk, by times genial and turbulent, have had a widespread impact on Europe and the world all out of proportion to their numbers.


AILEACH (Tyrone) In west-central Ulster.

ARMAGH The Archbishops of Armagh are the Primates of the Irish Church. Of course, being Irish, it isn't quite as simple as that. The See of Armagh was founded by Saint Patrick, and has been the center of the Irish ecclesiastic establishment since that time. The fact is, though, that since Armagh is located in Northern Ireland, the establishment became a Protestant diocese in the 16th century, howsoever a Roman Catholic parallel establishment was set up immediately after. So, there are now two Archbishops of Armagh, one Anglican and one Catholic. The following list details both in turn. BREIFNE (BREFFNY) A minor Kingdom during the Middle Ages, in the northern part of the Republic of Ireland, bordering on Northern Ireland. See also East Breifne. CONNACHT (Connaught) The rugged and thinly populated west of Ireland. DESMOND, Kings of: A division of the old Kingdom of Munster, created after the bitter conflict of the early 12th century. See also - Munster and Thomond. DESMOND, Earls of:  Taking up much of the old Kingdom of Munster, this Anglo-Norman Earldom was the chief power in southern Ireland during the Middle Ages. DUBLIN The modern city was established in the 9th century, c. 831, by marauding Scandinavians, who thereafter set up a ramshackle Kingdom. This state endured for more than 300 years, although after the Viking defeat at Clontarf in 1014 they were reduced to vassals of the High Kings or of the Kings of Leinster, as Jarls of Dublin. EAST BREIFNE (E. BREFFNEY) A petty Kingdom adjacent to Breifne, in the northern part of the island. ui FAILGHE (OFFALY) A Kingdom in Central Ireland. The name today is applied to an Irish county (in English Offaly, which is not entirely coterminous with the old kingdom. FERMANAGH In far southwestern Northern Ireland, frontiering the Irish Republic on the north, west, and south. A generally pastoral region with numerous ruins and antiquities, it served as the source for what are now the two Inniskilling regiments in the British army. The list memorializes a local Kingdom present during the later Middle Ages. IRELAND This list memorializes the Ardry, the High Kings of All Ireland. Dates given previous to about 850 CE, and especially from before 550 CE, should be approached with considerable skepticism. It should also be noted that the institution of the Ardry at Tara was seldom if ever universally acknowledged by the local rulers, especially in earlier times. Ennumeration reflects the victory of tradition over reality, in many instances. KILDARE A powerful Anglo-Norman Earldom in southern Ireland during the Middle Ages. LEINSTER The southeastern quarter of Ireland. LIMERICK In western Ireland, a Kingdom established by the Norse. MEATH The central and eastern portion of the island. ui MHAINE  A petty Kingdom in western Ireland. MUNSTER (Mumu) The southwestern quadrant of Ireland. ORIEL A local Kingdom in central and southern Ulster. Note well, the names and dates in this list are to be approached with caution. ORMOND A powerful Anglo-Norman earldom in south Ireland. OSSORY A lesser state in southeast Ireland, a buffer kingdom between Munster and Leinster. It's extent is roughly coterminous with that of the modern Diocese of Ossory, based at Kilkenny. The term Ossory was essentially tribal - Irish Osraige signified perhaps "the people of the deer" (Irish os). THOMOND A division of the old Kingdom of Munster, created after the bitter conflict of the early 12th century. See also - Munster and Desmond (Kings). TYRCONNELL Northwestern Ulster, in modern Donegal. ULSTER Originally encompassing all of the north of Ireland, this Kingdom lost territory to Tyrone and Tyrconnell, and eventually devolved into a more restricted area around what is now Antrim. During the Middle Ages, Ulster was an Anglo-Norman County. WATERFORD In the southeast, a Kingdom established by the Norse. **************************************************

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